NRMP Establishes Standardized Applicant Placement Rate Metrics for the Main Residency Match® and SOAP®

New whitepaper explores the applicant Match Rate vs. Placement Rates.

The National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®) announced today new reporting for the overall placement rate of participants in the Main Residency Match and the Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program® (SOAP). The NRMP has released a whitepaper, Applicant Placement Rate in the Main Residency Match and Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program, which reports for the first time both Match and overall placement data for all applicants compared to those who submitted certified rank order lists of programs in the Match. This new placement data offers unprecedented insights into the transition to residency process.

At the conclusion of each Main Residency Match cycle, the NRMP has historically reported the applicant Match Rate. The Match Rate is the percentage of active applicants (applicants who certified a rank order list of programs) who matched to post-graduate year one (PGY-1) positions when the matching algorithm was processed. The Match Rate does not include applicants who were placed in a PGY-1 position through the SOAP process. The “Placement Rate” metrics examine outcomes for applicants who participate in both the matching algorithm and SOAP and is calculated twice based on two groups:

  • All Applicants; and
  • Active Applicants (those who submitted a certified rank order list of programs).

In analyzing the applicant match and placement rates for the 2023 Main Residency Match, the data shows a Match Rate of 81.1 percent, which was previously released at the conclusion of the Match. When accounting for the Placement Rate – All Applicants, there was a slight decrease to 80.8 percent, resulting from the additional pool of applicants who register for the Match but do not submit a rank order list of programs and therefore are not included in the matching algorithm. The Placement Rate – Active Applicants was 86.3 percent, indicating the additional success of active applicants who obtain interviews, participate in the matching algorithm, and are more likely to receive offers in the SOAP process.

In the whitepaper released today, the NRMP outlines findings pertaining to the overall placement of U.S. versus international medical graduate participants in the 2023 Main Residency Match and SOAP. In addition, metrics specific to each of the applicant type categories of U.S. medical doctor (MD) students and graduates, U.S. osteopathic physician (DO) students and graduates, U.S.-Citizen International Medical Graduates (U.S. IMG), and Non-U.S. Citizen International Medical Graduates (Non-U.S. IMG) are identified.

To better understand the overall placement rate of Match participants, the NRMP will conduct an additional 10-year historical analysis of the Match Rate and Placement Rates. This comprehensive analysis will allow for other important factors to be considered, such as applicant growth rate versus position growth rate.

The NRMP will also begin reporting the two new placement metrics in the 2024 Main Residency Match Results and Data Book, published after the conclusion of the Match. This will ensure primary-source data about outcomes is being disseminated to the medical education community and will establish standardized definitions and accurate calculations of Match and SOAP outcomes data.

“Since the Match Rate does not factor in positions received through SOAP, it provides only partial insight into the outcomes for all applicants participating in the transition to residency process,” says NRMP President and CEO Donna L. Lamb, DHSc, MBA, BSN. “This has resulted in the medical education community employing differing methods in an attempt to better understand overall placement of participants in the Match. By releasing both the Match Rate and Placement Rates, the NRMP has established a standardized calculation and definition of applicant placement data, incorporating the multiple variables associated with Match applicants.”

The Applicant Placement Rate in the Main Residency Match and Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program whitepaper with additional background, definitions, and calculations is available on the NRMP website, along with more information on the SOAP process.

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About NRMP

The National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®) is a private, non-profit organization established in 1953 to oversee The Match® at the request of medical students to provide an orderly and fair mechanism for matching the preferences of applicants for U.S. residency positions with the preferences of residency program directors. In addition to the annual Main Residency Match® for more than 48,000 registrants, the NRMP also conducts Fellowship Matches for more than 70 subspecialties through its Specialties Matching Service® (SMS®).

For additional information or to schedule an interview with NRMP President and CEO Donna L. Lamb, DHSc, MBA, BSN, contact

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